Millennium Post

Refuse Legion of Honor?

Refuse Legion   of Honor?

Thanks to amazing talents like Kylian Mbappe, France won the Football World Cup in Moscow not too long ago. President Macron promptly announced that the entire team would receive the nation's highest honour. But now a French mayor has urged the country's young World Cup winners Mbappe, Benjamin Pavard, and Lucas Hernandez not to accept the Legion of Honor, the country's highest accolade. They, along with the rest of the squad and its coach, Didier Deschamps, would receive the Honour for "exceptional service" to the nation. Following France's 4-2 win over Croatia in July's World Cup final in Moscow, the office of the President announced the squad would be recognised at a ceremony at the Elysee Palace, though no date has yet been set. But Jean-Paul Pretot, the mayor of Loulans-Verchamp (Haute-Saone), a small village in eastern France with a population of 488, has called on some of the youngest members of the team to refuse their award in memory of those who died in battle during the First World War but were not honoured. In a letter to the French Football Federation (FFF), Pretot wrote: "On behalf of all those fighters who spent their best years fighting for our freedom, I ask you to refuse the Legion of Honor promised to you and to pay virtual homage to all those anonymous heroes who fought for our country." With November 11 marking 100 years since the end of the First World War, Pretot added that for Mbappe,19, Pavard, 22, and Hernandez, 22, to receive the award "seemed almost indecent a few weeks from November 11." He added he wanted to use the players' popularity to mark the centenary of the armistice. "If Mbappé, for example, said 'I refuse this Legion of Honor to mark the occasion [of the armistice centenary] ... it would have more impact than the President of the Republic going up the Champs-Elysées. "But, would it? Pretot, who said "tears and beers flowed freely" in his home as he cheered Les Bleus during Russia 2018, admitted that the players "deserve" their honour, but could not be called "heroes." "A hero," he said "is someone who risked their life and had no choice." In July, striker Olivier Giroud told French TV BFMTV that the award was an honour but admitted that those who had fought in conflicts were more deserved recipients. "It is lucky and a privilege, of course, an honour. I personally think that soldiers of war deserve it much more than us but, voila, it is how it is," the striker said. "When you have the luck of being the world champions, you benefit from certain advantages, and this is a part of that. So I will accept it with pleasure, "he summed up for a great team that did the nation proud.

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